The present invention relates to a product label with acoustic
Coupling and a method of using the label.
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
There are a number of problems with the reporting of errors in
Self-service devices such as ATMs are connected.
Usually a disorder
from a person nearby
the device that calls a service center. This person
then gives orally
the serial number of the device used by employees of the
Call Centers with the entries
in a service database is compared to those under a
to determine the device completed services,
before the call is forwarded to a customer service representative.
present system is based on a label attached to the device
is appropriate. Problems arise when the label is not accessible
or the person making the call to the service center who
Serial number not read correctly.
Problem is posed by the regulations of product certification organizations
such as UL (Underwriter Laboratories Inc.), CSA (Canadian Standards
Association) and VDE (Association of German Electrical Engineers) tightened, the
dictate that the printed serial number label on the frame
of the product nearby
its power source must be attached, which is usually on or in
of the lower part of the product. Unfortunately, it can be this
Placing the printed serial number label on the customer's hand complicate
Quickly and correctly find product serial number, so that the serial number
can be communicated to the service provider. It is also possible that
The serial number of the product is covered by mounting material
will, so an elaborate
Disassembly is required, for. B. if a cash register
its holder must be removed at a checkout.
The first telephone contact with the service center and the serial number message could be automated as described in the US Pat. No. 6,327,365
Applicant is disclosed by attaching a device with acoustic coupling to the self-service device, which automatically dials the service center and then automatically communicates only the serial number. Although this approach resolves the problem of first contact, it does not resolve the required communication between the device label and the computerized telephony integration (CTI) in the call center.
by virtue of
the level of experience of employees in some environments
the employees may
unable to configure the device for them
Report, identify correctly. This can lead to a longer call
lead at the service center,
searched for basic configuration information for a device
become. This is an inefficient use of the time of the customer care agent
and can be frustrating for
to be the customer.
there is a need to provide a product label to
Customers or - im
Case of financial institutions - employees
in the course of a service call, preferably at the beginning of the service call,
to communicate more comprehensive product information simply and correctly.
SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
A first aspect of the present invention is a bidirectional
A system provided comprising: a user-activated product label
with acoustic coupling attached to a product to be serviced
with said tag having memory for storage
of information about
the product to be serviced, a control means for controlling the data flow of
the label, an activation switch and an audible
Signalers, the sounds
which corresponds to the said product information, a telephone
and a computer-aided
Product support system,
that captures the information provided by the label
and interpreted, wherein the control means is arranged so that
it measures the data flow from the label to the system at the rate and
at the times required by the system controls as well
the information provided by the computerized product support system
the label to be sent controls.
will be additional
Tones that one
Phone number for
match the service provider, before the tones, the product information
System transfers preferably
one for the
Message to the user before the flow of information between
the label and the computer-aided
Product Support System
the system notifies suitable service personnel for this
According to a second aspect of the present invention, a method is provided to provide product information over a standard telephone line between a computerized product support system and an acoustic coupling product label, the method comprising the steps of: providing an acoustic coupling product label for attachment to a product to be maintained, the label having a memory storing the product information includes placing a telephone near the label, activating the label so that sounds corresponding to the product information are transmitted via the standard telephone, and controlling the transmission of said information at a rate and at the times required by the computerized product support system and control the information sent by the computerized product support system to the label.
Method preferably further comprises the step of determining
the service authorization by the service provider on the basis of
Information transmitted from the label to the system
Invention provides an automated solution for both joining
a device with the service center as well as for the transfer of all
information required to complete the service call. These
has the extra
Advantage that the label now store additional information
can be queried automatically by the automated call center
can be before
a connection is established with a customer service representative. The information,
the. stored on the label can also be updated dynamically
be so that the latest information about the configuration of the self-service device
as well as possibly
Device status information
Advantages of this solution
lie in an elevated
Automation of the connection, allowing more detailed information
the call center can be passed on. The invention also allows a
more efficient use of the customer service, now comprehensive information
Automatically detected by an automated system, so
that the supervisor can focus on more complex customer issues.
The system also includes audio feedback on call progress for the user
of the system, thereby providing a better interface.
Perhaps the most important thing is that the system is a solution to the above
Provides problems that are intuitive for
the user is and makes it possible
that the label automatically displays the serial number as well as other configuration information
to the automated call center system. It could possibly
existing ATMs retrofitted or in some of the smaller ones
to get integrated.
BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
by examples and with reference to the accompanying drawings
will now be embodiments
of the present invention, wherein:
1 Figure 3 is a diagram of an acoustic coupling product label system according to the present invention.
2 a detailed schematic representation of the bidirectional data stream in the system of 1 is.
3 a flow chart of the method for the operation of the label of 1 according to the present invention. And:
4 a second embodiment of an acoustic coupling product labeling system according to the present invention.
Reference is now made to the drawings, in which like reference numerals designate corresponding elements in the several views. 1 shows the system 10 containing a product label with acoustic coupling 20 , a standard telephone 30 at the customer site and a call center 40 , which is a computerized support system 50 accommodates. The product label with acoustic coupling 20 is attached to a product (not shown) in a relatively easily accessible location. The product label with acoustic coupling 20 has an activation switch 22 , an acoustic signal or loudspeaker 24 and a label power source 28 on. The product label with acoustic coupling also has a product serial number or other product identification number 26 on. The product identification number 26 is present in both human readable form (Arabic numerals) and bar code form read by a scanner. In some embodiments, one or the other form of numbering may be used.
The product label with acoustic coupling 20
can be formed from any of the standard components currently used to provide automatic credit card or business card size dialing devices, such as those described in U.S. Pat U.S. Patent No. 4,995,077
which was given to Malnowski and in which US Pat. 5,343,519
Feldman was granted. The product label with acoustic coupling 20
also has a memory 23
for storing at least the product identification number or other product identification information to be transmitted to the service provider.
The label power source 28 may be a battery power source or a solar power source from a solar panel (not shown), and is preferably a combination of the two types of power sources. The power source 28 for the product label with acoustic coupling is independent of the power source of the product, so it is always readily available. The power source may also include a small rechargeable battery to provide the label with a short burst of energy that is greater than the energy that the collector alone can supply.
The activation switch 22 is preferably integrated in the label, for. For example, as a raised area under the company logo (see 1 ). The raised label preferably has a flexible area in the surface for engaging the activation switch 22 when light pressure, for example with the finger, is exercised. Obviously, any type of switch that fits compactly on the label can be used. The desk 22 is preferably hidden behind a release paper or badge on the label.
The label 20 also has two volume control buttons: a volume up button (button 27A ) and a volume reduction key (key 27B ). These buttons allow the user to change the volume depending on the environment (for example, to increase the volume in a noisy road environment) to improve communication. This input is made in this embodiment by the call center 40 that says that the signal is too noisy and that the volume should be increased. Alternatively, this could be done automatically via the speaker microphone, which is paired with the label and automatically adjusts the volume when it detects background noise.
Prior art labels store only the contact number
of the service center and the serial number of the self-service device.
This information will be forwarded to the service center and
either rely on the known time setting of the delays
within the call center system or require human intervention,
to trigger the dissemination of the information.
The label of 1 additionally has an intelligence and control means 29 resulting in a more flexible automated solution that allows a change in the timing of the information. This allows intelligent control by the label 20 if the label is the information to the automated system 50 in the service center or call center 40 sends. In the automated product support system 50 that in the call center 40 Used for first contact, these are usually Interactive Voice Response Systems (IVRs) or Voice Response Units (VRUs) that are able to automatically control the input of the tones that are being played back by one Standard handset to be accepted.
These standard telephone control tones are DTMF tones that can be used to provide information between the tags 20 and the automated systems 50 in the call center 40 forward. The increased intelligence and control of the control means 29 provides increased automation of the process and frees the account manager from this simple data collection,
As in 2 By using these tones much of the data collection can be done automatically by the call center 40 be performed by the required information in the required order are queried from the label. The proper timing of data transfer is essential to the necessary bidirectional communication between the label 20 and the automated system 50 to achieve that, since the timing of the communication of the current status and the availability of the call center system 50 is dependent.
At the first telephone contact, the public telephone network is used for the call that the call center answers. When the network is busy, the connection time varies. If the call center does not have any free input lines, it may not connect. In these situations, the label must wait for a connection before it can send the serial number, or even re-dial the service center number. To solve these problems, the call center system sends 50 if a connection has been made, encode a code either as a DTMF tone or in FSK encoded to the label 20 to signal that a connection has been established. This is the label 20 possible by sending the serial number data from the memory 23 to start. Thereafter, the label again waits for a response code from the call center system 50 before sending more data. By using two codes by the one Call center 40 can be sent, the label 20 Detect if it should send the next data or if it is the previous data sent by the call center system 50 were not understood, should resend. This feature can be extended to support a number of other codes that can be used to identify the different information that appears on the label 10 are to interrogate. This means that sharing the data is not limited to a particular order. This makes it possible to change the call flow of the call center without having to change all currently available labels.
Another problem with the current solution is that the employee uses the phone 30 to the label 20 holds and thus is unable to get the answers from the call center system 50 to listen. Integrating user feedback with the caller provides another benefit that reduces potential confusion during the call and simplifies system operation. Providing audio feedback on call progress no longer requires that the handset be removed from the label to verify that a connection has been made. This would otherwise cause problems when sending data between the label and the service center, since only some of the data may be sent before the handset is removed and the connection is lost.
a connection is made will be the response code of the service center system
used to make a series of sounds
to the user
and to signal that a connection has been established. These
the range of tones,
which can be detected by the phone, so they are not from
the handset and thus not recognized by the service center system
which avoids confusion. A similar communication strategy will
applied to provide feedback when more data is in between
exchanged between the two systems. Another series of tones can be used
when the user removes the handset from the label
and talk to the account manager. This allows it
the user, the various phases of the service call over a
easy to track and understand interface.
The introduction of bidirectional transfer of data between the label 10 and the automatic service center system 50 delivers to the service or call center 40 Additional Information. This information may include configuration information about the modules currently installed in the self-service device.
be updated dynamically when modules from technicians to the
or removed from the device. This dynamic is achieved
Update by placing the label over an audio cable (not shown)
connected to the sound card in the self-service device
becomes. When the configuration application runs to the module configuration
the information is sent to the label as a new series of tones
to update the configuration.
This update is achieved through the use of software that converts the configuration information from the device (eg, from a cash dispenser) to DTMF or FSK tones sent to the label via the sound card 20 could be sent. The label 20 Then these sounds and the codes would be in the memory 23 of the label 20 saved and ready to be sent to the call center 40 are to interpret at the next service call.
With reference to 3 when a product is in operation on which a label with acoustic coupling 20 is attached, has a problem, the customer keeps a phone 30 to the label 20 and press the button 22 to operate the label (step 100 ). The label 20 then outputs the telephone number of the service provider in DTMF tones to connect to the call center system 50 to produce (step 102 ).
Subsequently, the identity of the user of the system 50 verified to prevent accidental or malicious use of the label (step 104 ).
This can happen in many ways. For example, the user may be prompted for a password. More preferably, the user would have to activate the label z. For example, press three buttons in a specific order to allow communication. The three buttons would be the start button ( 22 ) and the two volume buttons ( 27A / 27B ). This principle works like a PIN number that has authenticated the user as the authorized user of the label. There is no limit to the length of the PIN number because the keys could be pressed several times in different sequences. The procedure could also be used to configure the service center number, which has called the label depending on the PIN entered for different types of problems, e.g. For level 1 support to refill or another number if the vending machine did would have to be repaired.
use the handset to capture the voice of the user who is
then compared with a stored pattern in the label
to authenticate the user. She could also be saved and sent to the
Service center for local authentication to be forwarded.
they are encoded in the label and then sent to the service center
will be authenticated after the connection is made
the user and the service level agreement
(Service Level Agreement SLA). It would have to be
this is not a complete one
Voice recognition solution
act; it could
just be a word that the user has spoken and that with
a pattern of this word by the user compared by simple pattern comparison
has been. In the simplest case could
the word of all users as a trigger word without actual verification
used by the user, and access to the label
is only due to the fact that the user knew the codeword,
Call center can also use the serial number to enter the service level agreement
to check and
the misuse of the service center by persons without a service contract
The system 50 then query information at the rate and times required (step 106 ). The control means 29 controls the label 20 through bidirectional data transfer to those of the system 50 to provide necessary data, as stated in 3 is shown (step 108 ).
This is accomplished by outputting a series of tones corresponding to the identification number of the product as well as other product identification information that the system 50 of the service provider quickly detects and records. The service provider uses the transmitted information to determine service entitlement or other service-related information.
After the system 50 has received and verified all required information, sends the system 50 an audible message intended for the user (step 110 ). Upon receipt of the message, the user either terminates the call (step 112 ) or begins a call with one of the call center employees (step 114 ) before he ends the call.
The product label with acoustic coupling 20 The present invention uses a standard telephone connection and does not require the customer to purchase or provide additional hardware such as a modem to allow for automatic acquisition of the serial number or other identification number or other product information.
The product label with acoustic coupling 20 is preferably attractive enough for the label to be clearly visible on the front of the product. The product label with acoustic coupling preferably does not replace the regulatory labeling as discussed above.
Provision of functionality
the product label with acoustic coupling for already existing products,
which are supported by the service provider, may be a product label
with acoustic coupling as on-site installable label
As in 4 can be shown updating the label 20 Also be accomplished for devices that do not contain a sound card. This is done by using a device 60 , z. As an MP3 player, which is carried by the service technician and used to capture the configuration information and convert it into sounds, which are then in the label 20 get saved. This allows the current dynamic information to the call center 40 be provided, whereby a better level of information regarding the device (not shown) is achieved.
This also has the additional advantage that the information is located outside the machine, so it is not necessary to open or shut down the machine during the service call. It also has security benefits because the employee making the service call does not gain access to valuable media stored in the device. In some situations where the service level 10 may not provide on-site assistance, eg. For example, in the case of on-site entry-level support devices, it would be possible for the dynamic information to store part numbers for the replaceable parts. The call center 40 can then query the label 20 and replacement parts can be automatically sent to the owner of the self-service device for replacement.
Alternatively, other methods of updating the dynamic information on the label could be used, e.g. By activating the tag by radio identification, which could be used to wirelessly receive the configuration information from inside the self-service device. This would make it possible for the information on the label to automa table from the status monitoring system in the self-service device.
Also provides the inclusion of smart-inks or small printable displays 27 on the label 20 an optical indication on the label that a service call is required. This makes it possible for the label to inform the field staff that they should use the smart label system to call center 40 which increases the availability of the device and, as a result, increases customer satisfaction.
In addition, the label may 20 after it with the call center 40 is connected to upload the current configuration information as well as the latest information about the system state, which makes the call center 40 receives local information and thus can provide a more accurate diagnosis of the problems and error conditions.
Like also in 4 is shown, the label may 20 also be used for multilingual support and audio guidance.
So the service technician or the person who takes care of filling, for example, a small audio device 60 like carrying an MP3 player (see description above) that would contain the various messages needed on a series of labels in all required languages and dialects. The technician could then download the audio clips that are needed to the MP3 player and easily take them to the scene. At each self-service device, the required audio clips on the MP3 player could be selected and downloaded onto the labels.
when the invention with particular reference to certain preferred
has been described
Modifications and changes
be carried out within the scope of the present invention.